Posts Tagged “Maori Trustee”
16 December 2011
Applications for new Young Māori Trainee/Cadet Award now open
A new competition for young Māori working in agriculture has been introduced as part of the Ahuwhenua Trophy BNZ Māori Excellence in Farming Award in 2012. The inaugural 2012 Award is for the Young Māori Dairy Trainee/Cadet of the Year.
AgITO’s Strategic Relations Manager, Peter MacGregor, is encouraging talented young Māori working in the dairy industry to enter the competition. He says young people of Māori descent working on farms throughout the country are eligible to enter and interest has already been strong.
“The award was created to recognise the achievements of young Māori in farming and to promote and profile farming as a career of choice and of the future,” Peter says. “In my role as a judge of the Ahuwhenua Trophy I have observed the passion our young people have for their career and their commitment to growing the productivity of the farm and the sustainable maintenance of the whenua. This award will help to raise the profile of Māori in farming in this country.”
The award was announced at the Ahuwhenua Trophy Awards ceremony on Friday 3 June this year by the Minister of Māori Affairs, Hon Dr Pita Sharples and has been developed with the support of the Māori Trustee, AgITO, and Te Puni Kokiri. The Award is primarily resourced by the Maori Soldiers Fund administered by the Māori Trustee.
Entrants must be between 16 and 25 years old as at 31 December 2011, currently employed on a dairy farm, of Māori descent (they must provide confirmation of whakapapa signed off by a Kaumātua) and currently enrolled in or have completed within the last year a National Certificate in Agriculture (Level 3) or higher.
The new award aims to encourage young Māori into leadership roles, encourage personal development and growth and recognise outstanding achievement and excellence in Māori farming. The winner of the first Young Māori Trainee/Cadet Award will be announced at the Ahuwhenua Trophy awards ceremony on 8 June next year.
“Entry is also open to the 2012 Ahuwhenua Trophy – BNZ Māori Excellence in Farming Competition,” Peter says. “This year it’s the turn of Māori Dairy farmers to accept the challenge and test themselves against some of the best dairy farmers in Aotearoa.”
Applications for the Young Māori Trainee/Cadet award are open until 29 February 2012. For more information and to download an application form, please visit http://www.ahuwhenuatrophy.Māori.nz or see www.agito.ac.nz.
The Ahuwhenua Trophy is the premier award for Māori in agriculture. It acknowledges and celebrates business excellence in the New Zealand pastoral sector and is open to Māori farming properties either owned individually, or managed by Māori Trusts and Incorporations in New Zealand . Entries for the Ahuwhenua Trophy competition close on 27 January, 2012.
BNZ is the Platinum Sponsor for the Award. Gold sponsors are Fonterra, Dairy NZ and Te Puni Kokiri. Silver sponsors are AgResearch, AgITO, PGG Wrightson and Ballance Agri-Nutrients. Bronze sponsors are Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Allflex, AFFCO, BDO, Māori Trustee, LIC and Re:Gen. Sponsor support will also be supplied by Tohu Wines, Landcorp, Agrecovery and Ecolab.
Agriculture ITO (AgITO) provides leadership in education and training, develops national qualifications, maintains national standards and provides on-going support for their trainees and employers. AgITO training is subsidised by industry and Government. For more information on our qualifications, please visit www.agito.ac.nz.
The Maori Trustee is making changes to the way the government body is being run.
The organisation, which administers and leases Maori land, has appointed a four-strong advisory board – with backgrounds in finance, land management, and governance.
They include Wally Stone – the businessman who helped set up Whale Watch Kaikoura.
Trustee Jamie Tuuta says the team will act as a sounding board, to test and help develop strategy.
He says up until now he’s essentially been acting as board and chief executive, and he thinks it’s vitally important there’s a level above him.
The other Advisory Board members are Roger Pikia, Te Arawa Group Holdings chief executive and experienced directors Keith Sutton and Mark Tume.
The first majority Maori owned milk powder plant has been officially opened at Mokai near Taupo.
The plant has been set up by Miraka and its chairman, Kingi Smiler, says the project is the result of a unique alliance of Maori trusts with significant land assets and farming operations.
The two major shareholder are Tuaropaki Trust – which owns the land, and the Wairarapa Moana Incorporation – which runs 10,000 dairy cows on land it owns at Mangakino.
Other partners include the Maori Trustee and a Vietnamese dairy company, Vinamilk.
The $90 million facility at Mokai produces whole milk powder for export using renewable steam and electricity from the nearby Tuaropaki geothermal power station. It employs 30 people.
The factory has been eight years in the planning and can produce eight tonnes of whole milk powder every hour.
When it is running at capacity, which it is expected to do by next year, the Mokai plant will process 210 million litres of milk annually.
The strong whakapapa, skills and experience of Taranaki brothers Robert and Kevin Walden have helped them to take key roles with Maori incorporation PKW.
Their mother, Roberta, has always been a shareholder in PKW. Their great-grandfather, Mare Horo, was an original shareholder and owned land in the Rahotu-Oaonui area.
“We’ve had a footprint on the landscape, through the Horo side of the family, for a very long time,” said new PKW director Kevin (Tokatumoana) Walden, who replaces retired chairman Jamie Tuuta, now Maori Trustee.
Parininihi Ki Waitotara Inc owns 20,000 hectares, 90 per cent of which remains subject to perpetual lease, and is Taranaki’s largest corporate dairy farmer and Fonterra’s largest Taranaki- based milk supplier. Its 13 farms produced a record milksolids production of almost 2.45 million kilograms last season.
For the first time, two farms in PKW’s portfolio are being run by managers. Nine are operated by 50/50 sharemilkers, and the remaining two by variable order sharemilkers.
The move to managed farms has been underpinned by PKW’s desire to improve its cash return from its farming operations and to actively manage its own land.
Robert Walden, who returned to Taranaki this year after a season sharemilking at Waitoa, near Morrinsville, is one of the two managers.
The 83ha Skeet Rd farm near Opunake that he manages was one of the top five in the incorporation when it was operated by 50/50 sharemilkers.
Mr Walden grew up on the family farm at Rahotu and brings a variety of skills and experience to his role, having worked in freezing works and dairy factories and in Britain.
After breaking his back while driving a motor-scraper in Scotland, he returned to New Zealand to recuperate – a process that took 18 months – and took up truck driving before turning to farming.
Production on the Skeet Rd farm, where 290 cows are milked in an older-style 32-bail rotary cowshed, is on target for the season. Its best production is 111,000 kilograms milksolids.
The cows are receiving a kilogram of meal a day, half what it was earlier in the spring. They also consume about 5000 litres of Proliq a week. Eighteen hectares of silage has already been cut and more paddocks are out for silage.
“The season’s looking good. We’ll be over 50,000kg MS by mid-December and we’re on track for 102,000 to 105,000kg MS,” Mr Walden said.
“It’s been a challenging season, especially because I’d never been on the farm before.”
However, dairy assistant Kathryn Wapp, previously the sharemilker on the property, had proven invaluable.
His focus until now has been on calving and mating, and will soon turn to farm repairs and maintenance. He belongs to a 14-strong Maori discussion group run by Waimate West Demonstration Farm supervisor Joe Clough and to the PKW farm discussion group run by Dairy NZ regional leader Jo Bishell.
Mr Walden said he had wanted a position in PKW for a long time.
“I just wish I could have done it 10 to 15 years ago. PKW is awesome to work for.
“No two days are the same – and I know the work will be interesting and challenging.”
He is keen to be involved in training young Maori to become farmers and would like to mentor those studying agriculture at school and on AgITO courses.
“We want more young Maori in farming, but how do we do that? I’d like to be part of overseeing PKW farms and developing young ones.”
If youngsters showed ability and were keen to become farmers, PKW could assist them to undertake AgITO courses or to study at Taratahi Agricultural Training Centre.
Kevin Walden said PKW’s move to managed farms would offer a pathway into farming for young Maori. Youngsters wanting to follow a farming career would be even more interested if they could see opportunities to own their own farm.
PKW helped young Maori gain qualifications through tertiary scholarships for academic study and offered a pathway into the dairy industry by helping young Maori gain trade and agricultural qualifications.
In the early 1990s Maori farmers began to drift away from dairy farming because banks stopped supporting them, destroying the pathway to farm ownership.
“So we lost a lot of experience and skill. PKW, through a diversity of options, is now providing young people with that pathway.”
He believed banks were changing their attitudes as they gained a better understanding of the Maori asset base.
“Maori and iwi are becoming more involved in business development in this country.”
The Stratford Mountain House, now owned by South Taranaki iwi Ngati Ruanui Holdings, was a good example of Maori involvement and investment in business.
As a director, Kevin said he was focused on PKW’s strategy and vision and on maintaining a sustainable return from the farms to its beneficiaries and owners.
His governance and strategic treaty settlement role with the Conservation Department is coming to an end. Kevin is a trained teacher and a former regional director of Te Puni Kokiri in New Plymouth and now works for DOC.
A rugby coach since 1992, he will coach Spotswood United for the third season in Taranaki rugby’s senior competition next year. He took the Coastal team to the Taranaki title in 2009 and the Clifton team to the 1999 title.
He played rugby in Italy, made the Taranaki squad and played for Manawatu as a first or second five-eighth.
Robert Walden is rhythm guitarist and lead singer in Nga Tama, a four-piece band formed 17 years ago. A volunteer firefighter, he has belonged to the Okato, Rahotu and Morrinsville volunteer fire brigades and is senior station officer and training officer for the 28-strong Opunake brigade.
He was a trustee of Okato College before Coastal School was established.
The Maori Trustee says he’ll consider a suggestion to release funds to help Maori own their own home.
The Coalition to End Homelessness is calling for interest gathered by the Maori Trustee from leasing land to go towards a scheme to assist tangata whenua in securing their own whare.
Trustee Jamie Tuuta says the fund isn’t huge and he needs to be careful when deciding what’s done with the money.
He says his office is always open to exploring opportunities for the Maori Trustee can offer support.
Mr Tuuta says it’s a worthwhile conversation to have, because it adds to a sense of greater clarity around the role of the Maori Trustee.
The Trustee administers or manages about 100,000 hectares of Maori freehold land and his role is to protect, and build, the assets of Maori.
It has been a week of firsts for Taranaki Maori organisation Parininihi ki Waitotara Incorporation (PKW).
Just a day after PKW director David MacLeod became Fonterra’s first Maori director, Taranaki’s largest corporate dairy farming business has elected Hinerangi Raumati as the first woman to chair its board.
“I am extremely proud of what PKW has achieved over the past three years,” Mrs Raumati said yesterday.
“I am looking forward to building on the positive foundation PKW has set for the future.”
She was the first woman to be elected to PKW’s board when she became a director in 2006.
Fellow director Taari Nicholas said Mrs Raumati’s strong commercial background and significant governance experience made her the natural choice for the position. Her commercial acumen is widely credited with leading PKW out of its ill-fated Australian investment.
A chartered accountant and a member of the board of the Public Trust, she is executive director of operations for tertiary institution Te Wananga o Aotearoa.
She was chief financial officer for Tainui Group Holdings from 2002-2009 and has directorships in Maori health and fisheries organisations Te Ohu Kai Moana and Nga Miro Health Trust.
Mrs Raumati, who has whakapapa links to Ngati Mutunga and Waikato, replaces Jamie Tuuta, of Waitara, who has stepped down to become New Zealand’s Maori Trustee, a role which will see him helping to protect and build assets of Maori.
Yesterday’s announcement follows PKW’s record $11.6 million profit for the year ending June 30, 2011.
Other directors on the seven-member PKW board are Hinerangi Edwards, Bev Gibson, Tokorangi Kapea and Tokatumoana Walden.
PKW owns 20,000ha of land, is Taranaki’s largest corporate dairy farmer and Fonterra’s largest Taranaki-based milk supplier.